If you’re like me, when you read this Ottawa Citizen headline, you think that this article must be a joke of some kind, right? There is just no way in the world that a church would close down it’s own food bank because it “attracted poor people?” But, sure enough, if your read on (see article below) you will find that is exactly what Unity Church did back in 2000. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the article:
‘It’s attracting a lot of street people that make it uncomfortable,’ said Charlotte Prossen, Unity Truth Centre minister Thursday, ‘It’s creating social unrest in the church’
“‘A food bank is a social service and that is not who we are’
“Ms. Prossen said the program is being cancelled to focus on more church-specific activities.”
As I found myself getting really upset (and judgmental) about the comments made by this minister a humbling thought came across my mind.
Many “good” churches don’t have poor people that come to ANY services or programs, which makes it a lot less likely that there will be any “distractions.”
Which Is Worse?
Is it worse to have a food service program that you shut down for the exact reason it was created, or to never have a poor person come through your doors of the church in the first place?
There is no doubt that we (the Church) have a responsibility to “go” (outside the walls of our local churches) to meet the needs of the poor in our community, but shouldn’t the poor feel welcome in our churches as well? Listen to what the book of James says about how we treat the poor in our meeting spaces.
“Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, ‘Here’s a good seat for you,’ but say to the poor man, ‘You stand there’ or ‘Sit on the floor by my feet,’ have you not discriminated among yourselves and becomes judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him? But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court?” James 2:2-6
My friend Don Jacobson and his wife Brenda are being interviewed by Dr. Dobson on Family Talk about Don’s new book, “God Makes Lemonade.” Definitely worth listening to! Don and Brenda tell an AMAZING story about how God saved Don’s life after a terrible hunting accident, and how during an extremely difficult trial God is an ever present refuge of grace and comfort—while bringing glory to His name.
I love the idea behind the “God Makes Lemonade” book, and the web site even gives you an opportunity to share your own “God Makes Lemonade” story.
To listen to part one of the interview just click the familytalk.org link below and make sure to tune in later today for part two.
listen to the interview here: familytalk.org
Also, check out these related “God Makes Lemonade” sites.
I’m guilty! How about you?
Psalms 150 Praise the LORD! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with sounding cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the LORD! Praise the LORD!
I left church last night, around 10:00 pm, not having eaten dinner, and completely exhausted from leading a 3 hour training session (on not a very fun topic.) On the way home I had this urge/craving to call my friend, and old roommate, Jin Park and go grab a “Double-Double” (animalized) from In and Out Burger. What is In and Out Burger, you say? Well, to say that they are the really good hamburgers would be like saying that the Sistine Chapel is a really good painting. Next time you’re on the West Coast you MUST get one, and bring one back for me.
And, as many people know, they are a Christian company and print different Bible verses on their paper products.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Milk shake cups have Proverbs 3:5
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
Hamburger/Cheeseburger wrappers have Revelation 3:20
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
The Double/Double has Nahum 1:7
The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him.
Have you ever been to In and Out Burger? Where? Are you a fan? What do you think about putting the Bible Verses on their cups? Is it good ministry or a turn off? If a company is willing to put what they believe on their products should we be a little more bold, with others, and creatively share the verses that daily encourage us? Thoughts?
“Man, That’s Whack!”
I’m not new to Earthquakes. I have been through a few quakes while living in (or visiting) Southern California. The first quake I experienced, I was 12 and poolside of my fathers North Hollywood apartment complex when a medium sized (by west coast standards) earthquake hit, and I had never experienced anything like it. My Dad says, as he tells the story, that I just walked around the pool for several minutes watching the waves and the water spilling over the coping of the pool saying, “Man, that’s whack!” over and over again. “Man, that’s whack!” (It was the 80′s cut me some slack.)